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A fable is a short story that has a moral, or message. The characters in fables are often talking animals.
Read this famous fable and then answer the questions in the worksheet. Remember that you can look back at the story as often as you like by clicking the Help button.
The Lion and the Mouse
One day a mighty lion was asleep after a big meal when he was woken up by a mouse running across his body. He reached out a paw and trapped the mouse by the tail.
'How dare you wake me like this?' he roared. 'Now I shall eat you.'
'Oh, please forgive me, mighty Lion,' squeaked the mouse. 'I am truly sorry I woke you up. If you let me go I promise I will return the favour one day.'
The lion was so amused by the idea of the tiny mouse being able to help him in any way that he lifted up his paw and let the mouse go. The mouse scurried off gratefully while the lion lay down to sleep again, chuckling.
Some time later the lion was captured by a group of hunters who tied him up while they went to celebrate. The little mouse happened to pass by, and, remembering that the lion had released him, decided to do the same. He gnawed away at the ropes binding the lion until the great animal was free.
'You see,' said the mouse. 'You may have laughed at my smallness but I knew I would be able to help you one day.'
The moral of the story is 'Little friends may prove great friends'.